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As World Cup Nears, Brands Weigh Cost of Teaming With Qatar

Troubled by worker abuse and human rights, some World Cup sponsors are distancing themselves from the host nation. But not everyone is backing away.

David Beckham has been a regular visitor to Qatar since signing a deal to promote the country.Credit...Karim Jaafar/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

For Gary Lineker, a starring role in Qatar’s big show was not an option.

Sure, he had hosted a World Cup draw before. And as a former top scorer in the tournament who now works as a popular television broadcaster he has an ongoing professional relationship with the tournament’s organizer, FIFA.